Rigi is one of the first mountains many people visit when they are in Switzerland. It is one of the closest to Lucerne, and easy to reach from places like Zug and Zurich. And it is often snow-free far before many other hikes in the country.
The views from Rigi over the surrounding mountains and Lake Lucerne below is also definitely worth the visit. And the Rigi Panorama Trail offers one of the best and easiest ways to enjoy these stunning views.
Opposite Rigi you can see the lion-like shape of Bürgenstock, and further to the right, the other famous Lucerne mountain – Pilatus! And because you actually walk along Lake Lucerne, you also get to see the mountains towards the eastern end of this huge lake too.
The Panorama Trail winds its way along an old train path on Rigi, slowly climbing nearly 200 meters to reach the junction with Rigi’s other cablecar that connects with Goldau. So, if you are only going to do this hike one-way, keep in mind that you will have to either use public transport or make your way back to your car.
Although the Rigi Panorama Trail is a great hike, many of you will be looking for different options or extensions to this easy two hour hike.
My favorite is to climb all the way up to Rigi Kulm to get the full 360 degree panorama from the top. The best way to do that is to extend the Rigi Kaltbad end of this hike up to Rigi Kulm (via Rigi Staffel). It would make sense to actually start in Rigi Scheidegg in that case and then take the train all the way down from there. Alternatively, you could catch the train all the way to Rigi Kulm and hike from there.
For those want a real challenge, we often hike all the way up from Vitznau for more of a training hike – this take around 4 hours and 1360m climb. So, make sure you are fit!
The Rigi Panorama Trail starts in Rigi Kaltbad which is easy to reach by either cogwheel train from Vitznau (my favorite) or cablecar from Weggis. If you are a resident in Switzerland, also keep in mind Rigi is one of the few “big” mountains that recognises the Halftax or GA.
The trail ends at Rigi Scheidegg where there is a cablecar down to Krabel. This connects one stop to the Rigi train station at Goldau. From there it is a short walk to the SBB train station.